Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Demigod

I, being an Indian, grew up watching the unofficial sport of the nation. No prizes to guess – it’s the cricket. Being an asthma patient in childhood, I wasn’t able to concentrate much on playing it and by the time I was able to play, it’s too late to start learning. To quench my thirst, I play now-n-then as a middle order batsman but no significant knocks till date. Coming back to the current topic, as I couldn’t play, I grew up watching it instead. I used to watch match-by-match and ball-by-ball. There were days when I used to get up early in the morning to catch up with England touring Australia. But all these days, I was mesmerized and astounded by a single player (there are others too. But most of them pass by like a little breeze). It was none other than the greatest of the players, even in other great players’ books(to quote Sir Don Bradman and Shane Warne). The one and only Sachin Tendulkar.

No wonder, I was writing this article over my favourite snack, popcorn, and watching my favourite cricketer play. I’m watching the 6th ODI between India and England in the 2007 Natwest series. England piled up 316 runs in the 50 overs that they were allotted. So India’s facing the daunting task of making 317 runs in their 50 overs. Our innings started with a blistering Sachin and breezy Saurav. Wow, it was great to watch these modern greats play so good for their team. Sachin, in particular was at his best making a brisk 94 runs in 81 balls before he was out. He was out not because of the bowler but for his cramps. He helped the team to kick start their innings. But it was Robin Uthappa who helped the team secure a comfortable win with a whirlwind knock of 47 runs in 33 balls.
Enough of this match. But I was mesmerized by the ability of Sachin to pile up all those runs and achieving every batting record in his career spanning over 18 years. He was a kind of player who learns from every mistake he makes and tries hard not to repeat it again. He was gentleman outside the pavilion too. There wasn’t even a single stroke in the cricket book that he missed to play. In fact, he has his own trademark shots too. Every budding cricketer tries to emulate him and most of the children in our country grew up idolizing him. Just take the scores he made in this series and you’ll know the reason why – 8, 17, 55, 71, 94 and 99 at a whopping average of 57.33 runs per innings. I strongly agree that he was not at his best but it’s bad to expect much from this ageing warrior. Many people say that he had enough of his career and he should retire and every time he silences his critics with his bat but not with words.
There can be no words to describe his star-studded career except the figures. Let’s have a look at them too.

Cricinfo website

It was fittingly written by some fan during the 2003 world cup or so(still you can see these placards every now-n-then. “IF CRICKET’S A RELIGION, THEN SACHIN’S THE GOD AND WE ARE ALL HIS DEVOTEES”. All I can say before finishing this article is “Go Sachin, go. We are all behind you”. Fittingly, just before I finished this, Sachin was awarded the “Man of the Match” for this match.

No comments: